Part 2 of 3
Finally, Easter Sunday came the next day. My bestfriend is part of the Lighthouse Christian Family Church in Bellevue and she asked us to join her for their Easter Service. Touching is an understatement of what the service delivered. We felt the strong presence of God’s Spirit in that gymnasium. From beginning until the end, everything about it pierced right through the core of my being.
The first part of the service was a video about Easter. There was an interviewer who asked random people on the streets if they knew what Easter was about. Majority of the people had no clue. There were young kids, corporate people, man and woman, young and old – people from all walks of life. They first interviewed those who didn’t know why Easter is celebrated. I remember this one lady in the video who looked so corporate and successful, when she was asked about Easter she answered that Easter is about bunnies and egg hunting (almost everyone answered the same). So the interviewer told her that the real reason is to celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. She got annoyed and said “I don’t believe in any of that,” and walked away. The latter part of the video were the few believers who actually knew and believed in Jesus Christ. There were two individuals who struck me the most. Two men who were scruffy looking. In fact, one looked borderline homeless and the other definitely looked like he lives on the streets. When asked if they believe that Jesus rose from the dead or if they believe in Him at all, the first guy said with no hesitation, “Of course I do. Without him, I have nothing left in this world … NOTHING! He’s all I got. I will never stop believing. Until the day that I die, I will never stop believing!” Then the other guy was asked and he responded in the same manner, “Of course! Who would die for me, my sins? Who would ever die for me like that? No one will ever do that for me again…. NO. ONE. Will. Ever. Do. THAT. For me again…” He said it with such conviction that his words pierced right down to the depths of my soul.
After the video, it was time for the baptismal part of the service. There were four people getting baptized that day. Three of them were kids ranging from 10-17 years old. The last person was a man maybe in his late forties. Each of them were asked to tell the story of why they decided to get baptized that day. When it was that man’s turn, it was not just his story that struck me the most, but the love he has for God. He began by saying before he found God, he believed that He exists but he never bothered paying that much attention to Him. Everything was going right in his life. He had healthy children, a wonderful wife and a great job. He had control over everything that was important in his life, it was all going just as he wanted. In fact, his job was going so well that they sent him to Japan with his family to oversee the company’s branch there. He was doing well, very well that it got to a point where he was equipped enough to spin off and start his very own investment firm. His business was flourishing, everything in life was perfect. Then, after a few hasty decisions and unnecessary mistakes, in a split second, everything started to fall apart. Just like that, in a blink of an eye, it was all gone. It got so bad that for a long time he couldn’t even find a regular job, he could no longer support his family. At this point, he had nothing and no one to turn to … but God. And that’s when it started, he said the day he found God was the day miracles started to happen in his life. Miracles – not in a sense that he got his wealth and other worldly possessions back. But an even greater miracle – no matter how hard life got, somehow God made his load lighter.
The way he talked about God and his love for Him was so humbling and inspiring that you couldn’t help but cry. There he was this grown man holding his tears back in front of a gymnasium full of people. Speaking so softly and tenderly with such humility and adoration for his Loving Omnipotent Father who saved his life! It was so moving and humbling it will bring you to tears. He said, “I know what its like to have a lot and walk without God, and I know what its like to have nothing but walk with God. Why would I ever choose to live without Him again?” At the end of his story he said “Today, I choose to be baptized as an expression of my love to Him and to show Him my commitment!”
When he was finally outside for the baptism, right before the pastor dunked him into the water, he looked up into the heavens with tears in his eyes, mouth quivering and a smile on his face. His heart was on his sleeve and it was written all over his face, “Lord I love you and this is for you.” One of the most powerful moments I ever witnessed.
After the service was over, I was so high in the Lord that I couldn’t ask for anything more. I felt like this service was exactly what I needed to finally renew my strength! He filled my cup, and my cup runneth over. I was happy and ready to go home with a strengthened heart. But little did I know that wasn’t even the highlight of my day – that what was about to happen would be the turning point and the highlight of MY LIFE !!!